Monday, November 29, 2010
Friday, November 26, 2010
The particular part that I really liked was the "view" pieces. The fact that the art could look like something, and usually smudges, random designs and then at the turn of the art the image began to develop. It was amazing to me and surprising at how an image and such creation came alive at just the turn of the piece. I did enjoy the films and they peaked my interest in the subject.
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
I have always been enamored with stop motion, ever since I first learned about it after watching Wallace and Gromit. My friend and I would experiment with our toys but as you can imagine, nothing very epic came out of it, I have learned that stop motion is extremely easy to mess up. The changes in lighting, if you move a limb to fast... And a little kid's attention span can only stretch so far. But the nice thing about stop motion is that it's relatively easy (just tedious) and the product is always fun to watch. In fact, when Caiti told me she wanted to do stop motion I showed her my favorite stop motion movie (which probably wasn't such the best idea because it is rather intimidating...) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=240Vq6tIxio << The end product of this video required over 6500 pictures (and you can watch the number counting during the video).
Looking at videos like Wallace and Gromit, the youtube video, and the films in class are just couple of examples of all of the avenues one can go in with stop motion if they simply have the patience to do so. As for the films in class, I didn't really understand the story or meaning behind some of them... but that wasn't as important as studying the creativity and ideas behind the stop motion itself.
The most interesting points I observed from these films were little details. For example, there is a scene where the picture of someone's face becomes desaturated. The color just fades away... The use of color and lighting in stop motion is important. This reminded me that the picture's lighting must remain the same in every single shot in order to make it look like a real film. Though, this is not always true, for you can change the lighting between night and day, but such changes must be gradual keeping in mind that you want it too look natural. In the natural world there aren't these kinds of dramatic changes shifty strobe light changes in lighting. The same happens in the youtube video I linked too where one girl is holding a flame and it lights up and burns up the screen but really he's just taking a light and exposing the picture to it slowly and slowly until it looks like her fire is burning every thing up. This most likely required practice through trial and error a couple of times in order to learn how quickly to turn up the lighting. Just as the scene is stop motion, the lighting and colors must also be considered "STOP" motion as well.
Considering this, it is obvious that stop-motion artists require a great deal of creativity to think about what move they are going to do next and how exactly to make things move so naturally. How small their adjustments must be...
I also liked how instead of filming the characters in one scene he filmed them through the orb. I found this incredibly interesting, as they were able to capture the stop motioned movements through this orb instead of directly filming them. I could try it with a mirror on my own time and see what kinds of things I can do through that.
And I'm going to have to cut this short because I need to leave for break now.
Monday, November 22, 2010
The Politics of Representation:
Art and Human Rights in Latin America
Honestly, when I went to Dr. Giunta’s talk I was unsure as to what to expect. I was not sure how Dr. Giunta would use her knowledge of Latin American Art to talk about politics, although I did know that there are many topics that combine art and politics. However, my confusion was immediately thrown out the window when Dr. Giunta began her talk and focused in on her topic: Abduction and Disappearance. I was really interested in how Dr. Giunta described abduction photos in Latin American newspapers as “ghost-like.” This was simply a description that I had never really thought of before and it was interesting to see how right Dr. Giunta was; the images had a haunted look to them, even though the photos were taken before any of their subjects had vanished.
On of the works that Dr. Giunta showed and described during her talk, and the work that I found to be the most moving, was the work by Gustavo Germano Ausenc’as. Ausenc’as work consisted of a pair of images right next to each other, one is the original image (with the missing person in the image) and the other is a new version of the photo, with all people in the same position, which emphasizes the missing individual. I thought that this work was extremely complex because it not only deals with the issue of abduction and disappearance, but the photo pairs also evoke all of the emotions and details of the other people and the place where the photograph was taken. I found these photograph combinations to be the easiest to connect to because, even if I knew nothing about the people in the images, I could try and put myself in their shoes and feel the sense of loss that permeates the new image of the pair.
Some of the other works that Dr. Giunta discussed that I found very interesting were works by Luis Camnitzer and the Buenos Aires Memorial. The work by Camnitzer was interesting because it represented the people who have disappeared by showing them as blank lines in a phone book, giving no contact information for those who have disappeared amongst the regular list of phone numbers and addresses. The Buenos Aires Memorial was also very interesting because Dr. Giunta described it as a “visual record”; a continuously updated memorial, that as new people are listed as having been abducted, their names are added to the list on the memorial. All of these works helped me to understand the connection that Dr. Giunta was making about art and human rights: that even though these people have disappeared, they have in no way been forgotten.
Sunday, November 21, 2010
I also really enjoyed Hannah and Elise's piece. I thought it was hilarious and on-point, and it did a really good job of bringing the stark landscape of the ARC to life.
Narration-both the ARC and Historic videos used narration. While the narration from Historic was a continuation of two people talking, in a story form, the ARC used narration but more in a dialogue fashion (manipulated dialogue).
Movement-while the ARC podcast included pictures, on site pictures, to flash movement, to contrast with the dialogue, the Historic podcast also used movement. However, this particular one had video rather than still pictures.
Reactions from people of that site-While listening to the video in the Historic podcast, you can hear certain reactions to the site such as descriptions and labels, as they call it a beautiful view. While walking through the site, we are getting a first hand reaction that the videographer is feeling. The ARC podcast, too used reactions from people from that particular site. However, those reactions were not on site, the viewer does not experience the reaction with the person, rather, they are being told later.
In contrast, Hannah and Elisa's piece deals much more heavily with the human element. By integrating individuals thoughts about the experience, the arc gains meaning by what individuals perceive or label it as. This gives is a rather comfortable feeling for it correlated strongly with my previous perceptions of the place. It was cool how they molded it by providing tension between opposing views, which created a small game of tug of war with my ideas.
In conclusion the arc as done in Natalie's work addressed the arc as almost an individual in itself, while Hannah and Elisa's viewed it as an extension of the individuals who use it.
Saturday, November 20, 2010
Similar to Caiti’s response to the Justin Bates memorial, Danie’s response was also very colorful, and fanciful. However, Danie’s podcast took on a much more personal tone. I thought it was interesting that she not only incorporated other’s stories into her podcast, but continued to add her own personal thoughts, and stories about the memorial.
The two podcasts also had some simularities. Both featured stories of how objects placed on the memorial got there. This was the main focus of Caiti's video, and Danie's podcast included a story of how a piece of driftwood got placed on the grave. Both showed how the place is connected with people. Caiti's showed how people change the memorial, like by contributing items to it, while Danie's showed the memorial can change people, like by bringing back memories.
This was unlike Caitlin's which told a story. Don't get me wrong, it still had feeling, but it wasn't the same feeling. It was less of a feeling of meditation (like Jamie's) and more like the feeling one gets when watching a movie. You got to see the place changing through time, the different people (and animals) interacting with it and leaving shells to be remembered. It was a history, it was a tale to be told, while Jamie's was a feeling, something that has no time or place.
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Monday, November 15, 2010
Sunday, November 14, 2010
Saturday, November 13, 2010
Friday, November 12, 2010
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
After reading Space and Place, I gained a new view on what is space and what is place. I now view space as that which is open, new, untouched by experience, and place as that which is known and touched by experience. Whenever I visit a new space, it seems large, vast and confusing to me, even if the actual size of the space is not that large. However, as I familiarize myself with it and begin to associate memories, experiences, and thoughts with the space, it becomes a place. Then, as I visit, it no longer seems so large, vast, and confusing. It has a purpose and a meaning. In this way, Berlin and the Baltic Sea can evoke a sense of openness and infinitude. Yes, they are two very different spaces; however, when one first visits them and they are new, they seem vast, exciting, and endless. They are large spaces to begin with as well, so there is much to explore. One may find a few places within the vast space, and not be able to make the whole space a place for a long time. Only parts of Berlin and the Baltic sea may be familiar and full of experience and memories. Other parts may remain undiscovered, new, and untouched for a long time. It takes time to recognize and decipher space to make it become place. As Tuan says a child will not know that a triangle is a triangle until he or she deciphers the corners and shape. They gain meaning and become place, and thus the triangle becomes identified as a shape and place, rather than a space.
Tuan also discusses much about how our feelings and sense effect our perception of place. A newborn child cannot perceive the world the way an adult does; thus, a newborn child’s perception of space and place is vastly different than our own. Much more seems to be space to the child, until associations are made and the senses decipher and associate meanings to the object, room, building, outdoor space, etc. For example, children are not bothered much by dead or decaying things even though they have a strong smell. They will play with trash and will be greatly curious about dead animals. However, as people grow older they begin to associate negative feelings and experiences with the smell. Trash is considered dirty and untouchable. Death is considered disgusting and scary. People who know or have faced death remember that when they smell or see the dead animal. These cultural and personal associations begin to shape those spaces and make them places full of strong emotional responses and meaning. Experiencing a space or place involves more than just one sense, it involves all five. Sights, smells, touches can all become associations with a space and make it a place. For example, every person has a smell. We often do not notice or associate people with these smells when we first meet them. When we meet them they are mostly space. We may see some familiarity in them; however, overall they are new, novel, and seemingly infinite in internal depth. However, as people get to know each other, especially couples, they will begin to associate that person with a smell. If a girlfriend sleep’s at her boyfriend’s house one night and leaves the next morning, the boyfriend can remember and associate her with that place by smelling her scent on the pillow, or sheets, or bed. She becomes part of the experience. Her smell leaves a lasting emotional and memorable impact.
Space and place is always in our lives and it defines and shapes how we view the world. Space becomes place through experience and senses; these factors shape our perceptions of the world.
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
Anyway, without further ado... My reaction.
The first thing that came to mind during the reading and our discussion in class was a concept we had discussed after reading The Ways of Seeing, and that is how experience not only affects artwork, but also affects words in artwork. I noticed how the author pointed out that "I see" also means "I understand" in the English language which is not it's literal definition... This is similar to how he treats the words "Space" and "Place" giving them a meaning beyond their practical definition. These definition can only be created with experience. Artwork has the power to change the definition of a word like that. By pairing a word with a piece of artwork -giving it a title- you change the idea of the piece and the definition of the word. For example, Colby brought up the urinal that an artist tried to show in a gallery and that he named it "Fountain". The definition of "fountain" has changed, and so has the idea of the urinal.
Another thing that piqued my interest was later on when he was discussing how infants learn the world around them. I wonder if an adult goes through the same process upon discovering a new "space" and through that process it becomes a "place". I'm sure you could compare the two. For example he pointed out how when you ask a younger child, "Where do you like to play" they answer simply, "Outside" or "Inside" and when you ask an older child they will get more specific, "in my room", "in the basement". I'm sure that adults act similarly to unfamiliar and familiar places.
For example someone could ask a St. Mary's student, "Where were you today?" and a first year might reply, "I was in the campus center." but after a couple of months they will most likely get more specific, "I was in the grille/quiznos/bookstore/cole cinema/etc."
And of course, last but not least, the vantage points. Along with where you are standing I feel this also has to do with everyone's personal experience. For example, I am short, my mother is tall. If I am standing in the backyard of the house she grew up in, I am not only seeing it from a different angle than her because I am physically different but I am EXPERIENCING it differently from her since she grew up there and I did not. It made me realize that everyone looks at a space/place differently. No two perspectives are the same.
Monday, November 1, 2010
It was interesting for him to include animals idea of place. What that made me think of was warthogs and thier bunkers. The behavioral differences illicited by a warthog when in the bunker and when away from one are incredibly. One place directs a warthog to be more aggressive, while the other does not.
As for his discusssion on an infants experience, he makes claims based of research that has recently been disputed. As for and infant not being able to "distinguish familiar to unfamiliar faces", hes is incorrect. This statement is a far different from claim then stating an infants distress when with a stranger. Further more, when drawing conclusions from infants drawings, he fails to encorporate the possiblity that the drawing may not be an actual measure of their capacities. Instead the drawing may reflect the inability to draw said concepts by simple artistic deficiency and not conceptual deficiency.
One part I thought was really interesting was the difference between how a child views places, and how an adult views them. An adult can see an image of a place, and associate it with an emotion or sentimental memory. Children are generally very imaginative, so its fascinating that they do not see places in this way. This is because children have less of a past then adults, so they focus more on the present and future. Its interesting that adults imagine something, which children do not, about places. This imagining almost makes adults come across as being simular to children, just in thier own different way.
The section of Tuan’s book that struck me was the end of his “Experimental Perspective” chapter. It is in this section that Tuan begins to explain how “places and objects define space” (17). Additionally, Tuan explains, “An object or place achieves concrete reality when our experience of it is total” (18). Therefore, since experience defines objects and place, and objects and place define space, experience helps to define space. This concept, though confusing at first, becomes clear by the end of the chapter. Though a person may “know” a place through pictures, movies, or stories, it may still “lack sharpness unless we can also it from the outside and reflect upon our experience” (18). It is the experiences one has with a place or an object that makes it a unique space. For example, senior year of high school I visited many colleges. Through tours I was able to get a general vision of each college. However, since I had to pick only one school, I view the other schools I visited “through the eyes as tourists, and from reading about it in a guidebook” (18). It is my four years of experience at St. Mary’s that make this a unique space for me.
Tuan mentions that sound is a space. When I'm editing some audio, though my body is in my room or studio, my mind is in the space where that audio was recorded. If I personally recorded the files, then it becomes a place because I know how everyone was acting at the time, along with the location, time of day, etc. This changes how I work, but it's a bit hard to explain how exactly. Conversely, a place without sound feels unnatural and even creepy. Sometimes it can even be disorienting if you are able to hear in only one ear, if you were to stand right next to a soundproofing panel, for instance. One major example of a soundless place, though I can't remember the name, is a large, perfectly soundproof room with just a small catwalk so people can walk into the middle of the area. You can hear your heartbeat in your ears, and if someone faces away from you and talks, you can't hear them. There's a feeling of unease but also if intrigue, so this soundless space becomes a sort of place.